Stiles and gates

Stiles and gates belong to the owner of the land. However we have created a situation which we hope will encourage landowners to keep these structures in good repair.


Our approach is one of maximum convenience and therefore our philosophy is "gap, gate, stile" meaning a gap is the preferred option and a stile is a last resort.

We have little control over existing structures because they belong to the owner of the land. If we are authorising a new structure we will insist that the application is considered against our approach in the first instance.

Our approach to gates and stiles in disrepair

Here are our guidelines:

  • We are obliged by law to offer you a minimum of 25% grant aid towards the repair of the gate or stile.

  • If you have a stile in disrepair we will ask if you are prepared to remove it and leave a gap. Other options are:

    • Retaining the stile at that point, providing you can justify it, we will supply you with a free stile in lieu of grant aid.

    • If you are willing to erect a gate at that point, and you can justify it, we will supply you with a free gate in lieu of grant aid.

  • If you have a gate in disrepair then we will ask if you are prepared to remove it and leave a gap. If not, and you can justify retaining the gate, then we will supply you with a free gate.

  • If we run out of stock (and we do because this is a popular scheme) we will offer you 50% grant aid for the repair or replacement of existing gates or stiles.

Read more about our enforcement.

Replacing ladder stiles on your property

If possible we would encourage you to remove it or replace it with a more appropriate structure. However, we will offer grant aid at a level of 25%.

Responsibilities for injuries on broken stiles

Stiles and gates belong to the owner of the land. The Data Protection Act prevents us from providing you with details of landownership.

Claims for grant aid

You will need to include copies of invoices for materials and labour. Please note, we reserve the right to query the detail of the claim and cost of materials.

We will provide grant aid for stiles passing through or over walls. We do not offer grant aid for the rebuilding of the wall either side of a squeeze stile.

Erecting a stile or putting in a gate

You may only do this with our consent.

Please contact your local Rights of Way Inspector for more information - Call Derbyshire on tel: 01629 533190.

The Highways Act 1980 requires us to approve any new gate or stile. Gates or stiles built without our consent will be treated as obstructions unless it can be approved.

Diverting paths for electric fencing

If you have to erect electric fencing across a path to allow livestock to graze the field in a controlled way, you cannot temporarily divert the path. You will need to build a temporary structure in the fencing to allow the public to use the path.

Restricting dogs from your fields

Please read the animals page for more information.